Shopping bag in hand, off the lady of the house would go, meeting friends and neighbours on the way and in the various shops. If Mum was too busy, she would send one of her children to the shops with a “message line”, i.e. a shopping list, quite frequently with the required amount of money wrapped up in it. Some shops gave “tick” (credit) which would be paid off regularly.
Immediately opposite to this spot, across the street, were a number of tenement buildings, one of which was known by all locals as the Klondyke since it was built at the time of the Klondike Gold Rush in 1895-99. The four storey building located at Anchorfield (Stop 5), that you visited previously, was known informally for a time as Dawson City, for the same reason.
Below the houses at street level was a complex of shops. A small lane to the left of the Klondyke led to Parliament Square and a small vennel of forestair houses. The entrances to the Klondyke houses were at the rear. On the right-hand side of the building was the Pend (a small lane that brought you to a wood yard).
On the south side of Main St were shops of many types, well patronised by the community. On the page called ‘Businesses on Main Street (East)’, a lady that grew up in the village during the 50s and 60s, Myra Jamieson, writes about her experiences ‘going the messages’ (doing the shopping) locally for her mother.
Flora Rutherford, another child of the 40s and 50s, helped to compile the map above, which lists all 83 of Newhaven’s shops and businesses!